Apple has released iOS 13.3.1 and iPadOS 13.3.1 as its latest software updates for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad devices. One of the most notable changes that iOS 13.3.1 brings is the ability to let users disable the location-tracking functionality of the U1 Ultra Wideband chip. A dedicated workaround is available to turn off location-tracking. The latest iOS update also fixes the issue related to the Deep Fusion mode that is limited to the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max. There are also various other bug fixes that are designed for both iPhone and iPad models compatible with the latest software updates.
As per the changelog provided by Apple, the iOS 13.3.1 update brings a setting to let users control the use of location services by the U1 Ultra Wideband chip. The chip is limited to the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and the iPhone 11 Pro Max so far and is used to provide an enhanced AirDrop experience. It is also believed to be leveraged for AirTags item trackers that Apple may introduce later this year to take on Bluetooth tracker manufacturer Tile. Meanwhile, the company faced some debate over applying an always-on nature for the U1 chip to track user location in the background.
The U1 chip works on the Ultra Wideband (UWB) radio technology to enable precise location and spatial awareness. But since it collects location data of the user in the background, it has encouraged criticism.
Through iOS 13.3.1, Apple has attempted to put the ongoing concerns pertaining to the U1 chip to rest and provided a setting to disable its location-tracking functionality. All you need to do is to visit the Settings app and then go to Privacy > Location Services > System Services > Networking & Wireless option. There, you'll find a switch that you can turn off to disable the use of location services by the U1 chip on your iPhone 11 or iPhone 11 Pro model.
It is worth pointing out that turning off the location-tracking functionality of the U1 chip will disable the use of location services to enhance Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connections on your iPhone. You'll also not receive the enhanced AirDrop experience that Apple brought through the iOS 13.1 update in September 2019.
Besides a setting to limit the U1 chip, the iOS 13.3.1 update fixes an issue related to Communication Limits that could allow a contact to be added without entering the Screen Time passcode. The new software update also addresses the issue that could bring a momentary delay in editing a Deep Fusion photo on the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max. Further, the update resolves the issue related to the Mail app that could case remote images to load even when the Load Remote Images setting is disabled.
The iOS update also improves FaceTime calling by addressing the issue that could bring the rear-facing ultra-wide camera in use instead of the wide camera. Apple has also resolved a problem related to push notifications and addressed the CarPlay issue that could cause distorted sound in phone calls. Furthermore, the update brings support for Indian English Siri voices for HomePod that is entering India soon with a price tag of Rs. 19,900.
Just like iOS 13.3.1, the iPadOS 13.3.1 also has fixes related to Communication Limits, push notifications, and the Mail app. The iPad-focussed update also resolves the issue that could cause multiple undo dialogues to appear in the Mail app. Moreover, there is the support for Indian English Siri voices for HomePod.
The security content included in the new iOS and iPadOS updates has been detailed through a dedicated support page. There are fixes for various vulnerabilities and security loopholes.
The iOS 13.3.1 is available for all the iPhone and iPod touch models compatible with iOS 13. Similarly, iPadOS 13.3.1 is compatible with iPad devices compatible with iPadOS 13.
You can check the availability of the latest iOS or iPadOS update on your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad device by going to Settings > General > Software Update. Make sure that your device has sufficient amount of battery and is connected to a Wi-Fi network.